[SatNews] Arianespace's next Ariane 5 flight has been authorized for liftoff on July 15 following today's launch readiness review, which was conducted at the Spaceport in French Guiana.
This milestone, held prior to each Arianespace mission, confirmed that the heavy-lift launcher and its dual-satellite payload are flight ready, along with the Spaceport's infrastructure and the network of downrange tracking stations. With the readiness review completed, Ariane 5 also has the "green light" for its July 13 rollout from the Spaceport's Final Assembly Building to the ELA-3 launch zone, where this vehicle will be readied for an evening liftoff two days later, during a 37 minute launch window opening at 6:42 p.m. local time in French Guiana.
Ariane 5 will deliver a total lift performance of more than 8,580 kg. on the July 15 mission, designated Flight VA224, including a combined total of approximately 7,600 kg. for its Star One C4 and MSG-4 satellite passengers, plus the workhorse vehicle's dual-payload deployment system and integration hardware.
To be released first during the 40 minute flight sequence, Star One C4 is to reinforce operator Embratel Star One's DTH services in Brazil, while expanding access to other Latin American countries and to the mainland United States. The spacecraft was designed and built by SSL (Space Systems Loral), and will be positioned at 70 deg. West longitude after launch for a service lifetime of 15 years or more.
Located below Star One C4 in the launcher payload arrangement is the mission's lower passenger, Eumetsat's MSG-4 - which is the fourth and final satellite in Europe's series of Meteosat Second Generation spacecraft. Produced by a Thales Alenia Space-led European consortium, it will be stored in orbit, ultimately being named Meteosat-11 when it becomes operational to bridge the gap between Meteosat-10 and the initial Meteosat Third Generation spacecraft.